I think this is a popular confusion. Retribution theory, as I understand it, requires that we deprive the criminal of happiness, as commensurably as we can reasonably make it, to the degree that the crime was wrong. It doesn't mean that the suffering the perpetrator is supposed to receive is to be similar in nature to that which he inflicted on his victim.
This is often implied in "eye for an eye" arguments. I realize in the eye for an eye case, there is a similarity of crime and punishment. But I do not see this elevated to the level of principle, even in the Old Testament.